Hands-onHarry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

We play a bit of Harry Potter for the PlayStation.

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The PlayStation version of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was on display in demo form at EA's press event today, and we spent a bit of time with it. The game, which is being designed to appeal to as wide an audience as possible, begins in Hogwart's School for Magical Studies, where the wizards of Harry's world are trained.

What we got to play through, essentially, was a series of tutorials designed to brief you on the basics of wizardry. As the game's control scheme is simple and intuitive to begin with, this series of sequences should make it ever more accessible to even the most novice of players. Essentially, you move Harry with the analog stick, and activate his magic spells with the X-button. The triangle button, further, is reserved for the free-look function, while the shoulder buttons alter the position of the game's camera. Jumping is performed automatically, as soon as you walk-off a gap of sufficient size.

Easily the most engaging aspect of the game that we were able to sample was broom riding. As the riding of brooms forms the basis of the series' famous sport Quidditch, Harry is expected to be an ace pilot. Luckily, the simple training sequence gets you up to speed fairly quickly. In it, you have to collect a handful of moths that are buzzing through the courtyard where the sequence takes place. Techinically, piloting the broom is much like swimming, in most platform games, though it happens much faster, due to the lack of water-based constraints. It's all done by means of a single analog stick, and the effect is very exhilarating.

We'll have a full preview on Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone for you very soon.

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